Established as a military garrison for the French Foreign Legion, the provincial capital of Errachidia is still home to a sizeable military population stationed here to keep an eye on the nearby border with Algeria. Much like Ouarzazate, it is an expanding modern town staking out ever larger residential suburbs thanks to a significant injection of development funds. For those travelling north along the N13 to Midelt and Meknes, it makes a convenient stop.
Garrison towns aren’t generally known for their hospitality or culture, but Errachidia is trying to change that – every May, its enormous theatre hosts performers from throughout the Sahara at the Festival du Desert. Market days are Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday.